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Mormons in the Rio Olympics, day 14: Gold in water polo; updates in race walking, soccer, volleyball

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Two USA teams competed in the Olympic Games against Italians on Friday — one in the pool and one on hardwood. And both had very different outcomes.

The gold medal was at stake in the women’s water polo match between the United States and Italy

The United States’ team, including Sami Hill, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, won 12-5 against the women from Italy — earning a second consecutive Olympic gold medal.

The USA team took an early lead and kept ahead of the team from Italy. Hill, a goalkeeper, was put in in the fourth quarter and saved two out of three shots.

She posted on Instagram a photo of her with her medal and holding the U.S. flag.

On the volleyball court, the USA men faced the Italians in an intense semifinal match Friday that left them tied at two sets each and going into a fifth set.

“It’s hard, hard to deal with,” Taylor Sander, who is LDS, told the Deseret News’ Amy Donaldson. “Gosh, it’s going to make us stronger for sure.” (See “Taylor Sander and U.S. men’s volleyball team let semifinal win slip away, now must rally to win bronze.”)

The men play Russia for the bronze medal this weekend.

Soccer: The Brazilian women faced the Canadians in their medal quest on home territory. Brazil, including Bruna, who is Mormon, lost 1-2, coming in fourth overall in the tournament.

Race walking: John Nunn of California competed in the 50 km race walk Friday, coming in 43rd with a time of 4 hours, 16 minutes and 12 seconds. Fifty kilometers is about 31 miles.

Race walkers have to keep contact with the ground at all times and there are rules about straightening the leading leg when stepping, according to usatf.org. About a dozen of the 80 competitors were disqualified and each received three warnings for a bent knee and/or losing contact with the ground before being automatically disqualified.

Competing this weekend …

Marathon: Jared Ward of Utah will be competing in the marathon for Team USA on the last day of the Olympics.

Volleyball: Sander and the USA men will be playing Russia in the bronze medal match.

On social media …

Sarah Robles, who won a bronze medal in weightlifting, shared a photo of her coach and Team USA’s Order of Ikkos ceremony.

Email: rappleye@deseretnews.com, Twitter: CTRappleye